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1. Free tickets to see Andrea Davis Pinkney!

2014 Arbuthnot Lecturer Andrea Davis Pinkney

Andrea Davis Pinkney (image courtesy of Scholastic)

ALSC and the University of Minnesota Libraries, Children’s Literature Research Collections (CLRC) would like to remind the public that tickets for the 2014 May Hill Arbuthnot Honor Lecture featuring Andrea Davis Pinkney are available.

The lecture, entitled “Rejoice the Legacy!,” will be held at 7:00 p.m. on Saturday, May 3, 2014 at Willey Hall on the campus of the University of Minnesota. Doors open at 5:30 p.m. A reception and signing will follow the event. Required tickets are free for the lecture and must be obtained through the University of Minnesota website. To learn more about acquiring tickets, please visit the 2014 May Hill Arbuthnot Honor Lecture website.

The May Hill Arbuthnot Lecture is sponsored by ALSC. The lecture title honors May Hill Arbuthnot, distinguished writer, editor and children’s literature scholar. Each year, an author, artist, critic, librarian, historian or teacher of children’s literature is selected to prepare a paper considered to be a significant contribution to the field of children’s literature.

* * *

2014 May Hill Arbuthnot Honor Lecture With Andrea Davis Pinkney
University of Minnesota Libraries, Children’s Literature Research Collections
Saturday, May 3, 2014 from 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM (CDT)
Minneapolis, Minnesota

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2. Author Visits

Mom has two author visits coming up. One this week and one next week. Both are call-backs, so she kind of knows what to expect. One thing she expects is fun! Rejection is the downside of writing. School visits are the upside AND her most favorite thing about being an author. Bar none.

school visit

Fifth graders and college students make for very different visits, which means Mom will pack up her school visit stuff  TWICE. I love when Mom packs up her bag.


Sometimes there are candies in there. Or gum. Or tissues.  And sometimes stuffed toys, depending on where she’s visiting. I ALWAYS check the bag out, just in case.


Once I found (and ran with) a smaller bag from inside the bigger bag. It had a fork, a beanie baby, a paintbrush, and a baseball inside. Mom said, “I need them for a game.” and “You wouldn’t understand.” and “Eeeewww. They’re slimy with dog spit!”


Although I love the bag, I hate the leaving. Why does every upside need a downside? When Mom says, “I have to go,” I hear the word GO and head for the door.



She says, “Not this time.” and “I’ll be back in a little while.” and “Do you want a treat?” which is EXACTLY what I want. And that’s how the downside becomes the upside again.

milkbone toothbrush


10 Comments on Author Visits, last added: 4/15/2014
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3. Latino authors - NYRB's white-washed Children's Classics

This is our third post about New York Review of Books' omitting latino books from their Children's Classics list. Several authors from the Latino and Latina Writers Group(LinkedIn) commented and are excerpted below.

When we contacted NYRB, their response was that they didn't know of any latino children's books that should be on their list. That ignorance resulted in a white-washed list. By their definition, there are no latino classics in this category.

Comments by latino authors:

Kathleen Alcala, Permanent Faculty at NILA and Author:
I don't write children's books, but some of the best I have come across are now published and distributed by Lee and Low Books. Many of our top-notch Latino/a writers have also written children's books. NYRB could probably take the time to do the research.
Maria Victoria, Bilingual Author, Editor & Ghostwriter
I do write children's books, I have written them for years for my sons and now for my grandchildren, but only now I am starting to self-publish those stories via Createspace (Amazon). I don't have the time to wait for the industry to embrace our diversity. When I tuck my little ones in bed, I want them to be proud of their Mexican heritage and who they are: beautiful bilingual and bicultural children.

Mona AlvaradoFrazier, Independent Writing and Editing Professional:
Latinas for Latino Lit started last year in response to articles such as NYRB's. Pat Mora has a large list on her website and Reading is Fundamental has a list of multicultural books.

I blog about multicultural books because I believe it takes Latinos supporting Latinos to make these books visible; there are other bloggers doing the same. I beta-read for Latina/o authors because I want to help get them published. We all can do something. Currently, I have two Young Adult novels completed and am looking for an agent. I have one manuscript (protagonist is Mexican,17-year-old mother in prison) with Amazon's Breakthrough Novel competition. They had 10,000 entries, and whittled this to 2,000 (I made this round). On April 14th, Amazon will again cut 1500 entries. I'm hoping my YA novel makes the next round and that I can attract an agent.

Maria Victoria [above] is so right; it's difficult to continue to wait for "the industry" and the "literary gatekeepers," but it also takes funds to publish your own novel (approx. $2,000 to 5,000). I may take that route soon.

Lucha Corpi, Independent Writing and Editing Professional
I've written stories and poems for children, and a couple have been published in the Houghton Mifflin Spanish elementary series, for example, and other pubs. I've also written bilingual picture books--one published by Children's Book Press in S.F., now an imprint of Lee & Low's in NY, another by Arte Publico Press Piñata imprint.

When writing for a classroom series, you're given a list of rules/taboos as to what you can and cannot do or say, i.e. working in the fields OK, but you can't mention of La Migra or living conditions for children of migrant families, etc. After a while, I wasn't willing to write for hire when major publishers dictated what I could write or not about. I can control when and where I publish to make sure my books outlive me.

As a translator of stories for children, however, I had a chance to read English texts of world oral and literary traditions. I confirmed that in all the stories chosen for certain grades, there were common threads that made the stories "universal" and which I call the "human element," in general. We can't deny ourselves our rightful place in this universal culture. Perhaps in some honest and sincere way, a few major publishers want stories that can be sewn together into the larger tapestry of human experience. I don't find anything wrong with showing all the ways in which people from all cultures are simply human, whose literatures have many points of contact along those "universal" lines.

I also believe that as Chic@nos/Latin@s, we are part of a second universe--Mexico and Latin America, and of Latin@ culture. Each is unique in its own historical and cultural way, but socio-politically regarded as disposable once our use to White America is no longer important, desirable or necessary. Major publishers are not willing to publish literature that is "in their face," (about La migra, children of migrant families, etc.) that mirrors all the ways in which they have failed one of the culturally and linguistically richest and most diverse groups in the U.S.

Chicano/Latino publishers have been publishing that literature of resistance and protest, talking about taboo subjects to the extent they can. They have had to battle constantly to remain and help our literatures grow. However we may feel personally about them, we have to remember that theirs hasn't been a road paved with gold, either. So we need to support their efforts and buy their books directly from them instead of Amazon, etc. Most of the time, all we do is criticize them or tear them down, not realizing that when we don't buy their books, we are also hurting the same writers we're talking about here.

As a student of "classic" literature and the literary establishment throughout the ages, one last point about the word "classic" in literature or any of the arts. Ironically, the classics are those works, which were "popular" when their creators were alive, though they made no money from their popularity. They became "classics" when their creators had been dead at least 50 years.

I follow two rules: I do my job as a writer, and write, regardless of criticism or circumstance, and I make sure I publish with publishers who may not pay big bucks in royalty, but who will keep my books in print long after I depart this vale of literary tears. I buy and read books published by Chican@/Latin@ presses, and in general support writers and poets this way.

Who knows? One of these years, one of your poems or a story for children, or one of your books might become a classic. True that, if what I say is right, you won't be here any longer to enjoy the renown and the rewards and fruits of your labor.

Felipe de Ortego y Gasca, Scholar in Residence, Western New Mexico University:
It's not just the NYRB (with whom I have a long-standing peeve--since 1973 when it rejected my piece about Chicanos in favor of an Anglo piece about Chicanos by John Womack).

The real problem, however, is with the American Library Association and its annual awards for children's literature. Talk about a dearth! Armando's commentary should be a clarion call for American publishers.

Thanks to Arte Público for the children's books they've published.

Ideologically, we should not expect écrit oblige [great works] from myopic American publishers. Just as the history of the lion hunt will always favor the hunter until lions have their own historians, publishing will always favor the dominant group until Latinos have their own publishers. Hasta la victoria!

Armando Rendón, Editor of Somos en Escrito Magazine:
I gather we’re not getting too agitated about the NYRB list--Rudy has hit the main points in his response to Sara Kramer. My take is that we consider the context, a bastion of white privilege revisiting its own past, but largely unaware and painfully unconcerned with the present reality of millions of Chicanos and Latinos preparing to make our future. If any of us expect entities like the NYRB to empower us to advance in our art and yet maintain our integrity, that’s barking up the wrong ancestral tree.

We as American writers of a certain perspectiva must move on, concern ourselves with writing for the present generation, but having in mind the needs of millions of Latino youth to come. I refer to the critical need for us as writers to provide literary sustenance for the Latino and Latina youth who have already become the majority of first to 12th grade populations in New Mexico (57%), California (51%), Texas (51%), with Arizona (43%), Nevada (40%), and Colorado (30%) not that far behind. The number of literary works written each year for Latino youth is dreadfully low, maybe 2 to 3 percent of children’s books published each year in the U.S.

One cause we can address directly: Latina and Latino writers, established and aspiring, should direct some of their time and talents to writing for young people. My focus as a newcomer to writing for young people is on middle and high school youth because I can craft stories for them of my own recollections. Others might have the insight and mental dexterity to fashion those delightful little tales that can help form the imaginations and identity of toddlers and early school children.

Which causes me to reflect on an important insight that I read in one of the letters to the editor that appeared on 3/23/14, after the NYRB published its 100 best list. The correspondent, who hailed from the Bronx, wrote that a “well-written book …should represent humanity, and readers should be able to find something of themselves in it – no matter the protagonists’ background or color.” A fine point, one that exemplifies the finest literary works anywhere.
However, this notion taken to its logical extreme suggests that all books could be about white Anglo Saxon men, and that would be okay as long as we others could find “something” of ourselves in the text. That’s exactly the attitude that led to the present “lack of diversity,” or to be explicit, the racism by omission in children’s literature.

What I’ve come to realize is that writing for children today is a political act. Taking the word, political, to its ancient Greek root, polis, which stood for the state, the confluence of people who together make up a society. It follows from the converse reality that teachers, librarians, scholars, and parents face: the absolute dearth of books written for and about Latino boys and girls in the U.S. Thus, limiting the presence of Latino and Latina children in books for school kids is a political act, driven by generations of discrimination, oppression and racism.

Final point: while we need more books for Latino youth, we need to set and uphold certain literary standards. Is anyone taking on the task of drafting a set of guidelines appropriate to writing aimed at Latino children, a gathering of Latino writers, educators and librarians with an understanding of the pedagogical, emotional and intellectual/creative needs for these ages? Such a document could be a useful guideline for all of us, even eye-opening for the gatekeepers over at the NYRB.

More salient comments, Lucha. To pick up on one of the things you said, about writing for posterity. When you consider, for example, that in Texas, my home state (no apologies), the school population in 2050 if not earlier will reach 9 million and 6 of those millions will be Latino, we have to think for the future: what we write today will impact millions of kids, and not just Chicanitos but any child from the standpoint of opening up a vision of the world that's multicultural and multicolorful. Adelante!

(Rendón is also the author of the young adult novel, Noldo and his magical scooter at the Battle of the Alamo, which was just named a finalist for an International Latino Book Award.)

Barbara Renaud Gonzalez informed us about her book, The boy made of lightning, the first interactive book on the life of Voting Rights pioneer Willie Velasquez, independently published by AALAS, 9/2013. Original narrative, art, music, sounds and written in Tex-Mex, with pop-ups and translation; it was nominated for a Tomas Rivera Prize.

Also pertaining to this discussion, see Matt de la Peña's thoughts in the article, Where's the African-American Harry Potter or the Mexican Katniss?

Acevedo strikes again

Good Money Gone, a novel co-authored by Mario Acevedo, is a finalist in the International Book Awards. Also, Mario’s essay, "Love Between the Species", has just been published in Now Write! Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror (L. Lamson, edit.), a rare and revealing look at the writing secrets of speculative genre masters.

Es todo, hoy,

Author FB - rudy.ch.garcia
Twitter - DiscardedDreams

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4. Children’s Book Week Kid Lit Giveaway Hop 2014!

CBW Kid Lit Giveaway Hop 2014 - Banner - FINAL

Are you a children’s book or teen literature blogger, an author, a publisher, or a publicist looking to share copies of a fabulous book? Mother Daughter Book Reviews and Youth Literature Reviews are joining forces to provide you with the opportunity to take part in a Blog Hop featuring links to giveaways for fabulous children/teen’s books, gift cards, cash, or other prizes. What better way to celebrate Children’s Book Week?


How Does it Work?

Dates: May 12 to 18, 2014

  • Posts must go live at 12:01AM (EST) on May 12, 2014
  • Giveaway must end on May 18, 2014 @ 11:59PM (EST)

(If using Rafflecopter, set your widget to end on MAY 19th at 12:00am)

Cost: FREE!

Prize: Children/Teen’s Book and/or a Gift Card

If your prize consists of a book, it must be one appropriate for children/youth under the age of 18. You can also offer an Amazon gift card, a credit at the Book Depository, or PayPal cash as a prize (minimum $10) in conjunction with a book OR in lieu of a book, but your post MUST discuss children’s books or literature. Links to posts just offering a gift card or cash with no mention of children/teen’s books or literature will be removed from the linky list. If unsure, email me!

Posting Requirements:

Posts must be published no later than May 12, 12:01 am, 2014 ~ Posting early is ok. Posting late is not ok.

Your post must contain the following information (clearly visible):

  • Event Button
  • Giveaway Details
  • Links to the Hostesses (Mother Daughter Book Reviews and Youth Literature Reviews)
  • Giveaway Linky List

The event button, links to hostesses, and linky code will be emailed to you on Monday, May 5, 2014.

Please send me your direct URL once your post goes live, or if possible you can send me your permalink ahead of time. Failure to send me your link within 24 hours of the start of the Giveaway Hop will result in the removal of your link from the linky. If you send me the direct link after the 24 hours deadline, it will be added to the bottom of the list.

Adding a Link to the Linky:

To enter the Giveaway Hop, you simply have to enter the home page of your website followed by the country restrictions (i.e., Who can enter? US; US/CAN; WW; other). Once your post is ready you can send me the permalink as described above.

Deadline for Sign-Ups: May 9, 11:59 pm (EST), 2014

The linky will close and no additional links will be accepted.

Promoting the Kid Lit Giveaway Hop

We need YOUR help in spreading the word about the Kid Lit Giveaway Hop. You are certainly not required to do anything other than sign up if you wish to participate, but we would sure appreciate your help by either posting about the sign-ups, tweeting about it, or sharing the information within your circles or even popping the event button up in your sidebar. We are also happy to provide you with the full post HTML code if you would be willing to post about this sign-up. Just email Renee @ Mother Daughter Book Reviews. The more sign-ups the better for all of us!


Please feel free to contact either Renee [renee (at) motherdaughterbookreviews (dot) com] or Katie [YouthLitReviews (at) live (dot) com]. We are here to answer any questions you may have.

Sign-Up Below

You will be asked to enter the title you want displayed in the linky list (please add country restrictions in brackets), a link to your home page (or direct URL if you have it), and your name and email address.

* Like our fancy event banner? We used designbox1 from Fiverr to create it. Ask me about it!*

2 Comments on Children’s Book Week Kid Lit Giveaway Hop 2014!, last added: 4/15/2014
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5. Almost…


Spring is almost here. I mean it’s here on the calendar, but in real life, not so much. Mom and I look for flowers outside, but we’re not seeing a whole lot.


Almost there…not quite…

The grass is still kind of brownish and slime-ish in spots. And the wind still turns my ears upside down.


Also, the rain has Mom bringing out my raincoat every couple of days. April showers and all that….


Real, actual spring – street nap spring – takes longer to happen, I guess.

street rest

Chilly tummy.

Stories take longer than expected sometimes, too. The calendar says we’re 10 days into the month, but we’re not seeing much of Mom’s April manuscript. The idea is still brownish and slime-ish, and wind and rain in Mom’s head are slowing down the progress. Her ears aren’t upside down or anything, but I’m hearing an awful lot of “Here we go.” and not an awful lot of, “Yay. I’m finished.”

I think the rain wetting the soil and the wind flying the seeds all around are putting down the groundwork for the real season.

This is definitely a sign of spring...

This is definitely a sign of spring…

Like the rain and the wind, mind-writing and planning are putting down the groundwork for Mom’s story. The daffodils are starting to pop. I hope Mom’s story will pop soon, too.

daffodils bloom



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6. Countdown Wednesday

Today, Mom and I are counting down about advice.

Advice I Get

3. Be Quiet – Mom says this word when the mailman comes. Ditto the FedEx and UPS guys. She clearly does not know these people are here to kill me. I must sound the alarm.

2. Don’t pull – Mom tells me this word when I am smelling delicious things outside, and checking my pee-mail. She clearly does not know that if I don’t quickly eat the goose candies in the grass, one of my dog friends might get them and I will miss out.


1. Fetch it – It took me a long time to understand this advice. I finally learned what it means. For any of my friends struggling with fetching, the secret to it is the bring-back. Do not get the ball, bring it on the couch, and try to hatch it like an egg.


Nailed it. Wait. What??

That is apparently not fetching. Bring it back to Mom and GET A TREAT. That’s fetching.

Advice Mom Gets

3. Add Conflict – People don’t like conflict. Especially Mom. But in a story, conflict is good. So are suspense, action, problems, unexpected obstacles, surprises, and other kinds of trouble. I like trouble.

broken barrel

I don’t think the monkey will pop out of the barrel and laugh at me anymore…. RIP laughing monkey.

2. Find Your Voice – Each time she starts a new story (at least once a month), Mom has to find her picture book voice. Voice helps the book sound unique and different from other books. Voice shows Mom’s characters looking at the world in their own special way.


1. Focus on Character – Mom usually writes stories that are plot, plot, plot. Lately, she is trying to take the advice she’s received about developing character, character, character. Susanna Hill’s Picture Book Magic class helped her a lot with that. Now Mom can get to know her characters before they start living in her story.



Speaking of living, two of my bloggy friends gave me the Sunshine Award, recently. I think it’s the perfect time of year for this award, since the snow is finally gone, and any minute now, the sun will shine and I will take a street nap.

street nap

A big, sunny thank you to Collies of the Meadow and The Squeak Life for sharing this prize with me. If you feel like you need a smile, visit them. They’re a guaranteed giggle. And if you want to celebrate the sunshine, take this award and post it to your own blog.

12 Comments on Countdown Wednesday, last added: 4/2/2014
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7. Billy and the Monsters Who Ate All the Easter Eggs Giveaway

Today, I’d like to share with you the chance to win a signed copy of the Amazon Best-seller ‘Billy and the Monster who Ate All the Easter Eggs’ by British Author David Chuka who is a friend of mine.Billy and the Monster who Ate All the Easter Eggs

With Easter around the corner, this book will be a welcome addition to your loved ones library.

This is the third book in the Billy and Monster series and it has gotten about 48 glowing reviews on the Amazon website.

Before I reveal how you can enter to win a signed copy, let’s find out what happens with Billy and Monster in this Easter edition.

Billy and Monster love all the holidays as they get to spend quality time together. However, their best holiday is Easter as they get to eat their favorite food…CHOCOLATE!

This year, they’re spending Easter with Grandma Chocalicious who loves Chocolate even more than Billy. She’s an expert at making chocolate cake, chocolate waffles and even chocolate pasta.

This year Grandma Chocalicious has made a pyramid of Easter eggs for her party on Easter Sunday. Billy and Monster want one of the Easter eggs but Grandma says they have to wait till Easter Sunday.

What happens when Billy and Monster tip toe downstairs and the pyramid of Easter eggs comes falling down?

For a chance to find out what happens simply click the link below and you could very well have your signed copy just in time for Easter.

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Billy and the Monster Who Ate All the Easter Eggs by David Chuka

Billy and the Monster Who Ate All the Easter Eggs

by David Chuka

Giveaway ends April 15, 2014.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter to win

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8. Awards from home - Diamonds are a girl's best friend

Okay, so the diamonds may be symbolic here!
It's always a thrill to be nominated for any award, but some awards have an extra sentimental kick for their particular book.  RAVEN'S MOUNTAIN (Australiantitle) or FACING THE MOUNTAIN (Canadian title) is set in the Canadian Rockies, but I wrote it after living in Australia for my whole adult life. So I was a bit nervous about Canadian reviews - and very, very happy to get such lovely ones. Unfortunately wiping out my hard drive last year means that I don't seem to have copies of them, so you'll just have to believe me. Normally I get most excited about comments on the actual writing, but this time it was a line from a prestigious journal along the lines of: 'this Edmonton native demonstrates her knowledge of the mountains.' 

Well, what do you know! I just googled to see if I could find that quote for you, and though I didn't find it, discovered that Facing the Mountain was Commended, Best Books for Kids and Teens, Canadian Children's Book Centre, 2012. 

A nice surprise. And there's no point in wishing that people would tell authors about awards their books have been listed for or even won. (Though there might be a point in checking my google alerts occasionally.). But if anyone's wondering - yes, we really do like to know. 

But here's one I do know about, the one I started writing this blog about: the Saskatchewan Willow Awards. Facing the Mountain is shortlisted for the Diamond Willow category, Gr 4-6. And why is Saskatchewan especially important to me for this book? Because the town Raven grows up in is very likely there. I created it from the Red Deer, Alberta that I lived in as a 7 to 10 year old, but today's Red Deer is much bigger than the town I had in mind for Raven. And I'd also wanted the distance to the Rockies to be further, so although I never say exactly where on the prairies it is, her fictitious town has wiggled its way across the border to Saskatchewan. 

I won't be able to attend the Gala for the award announcements, but I've sent off a signed copy for one of the prizes for the students attending, and I'll certainly be there in spirit. I'll also be looking out for all the other books on the list; there are some wonderful ones there. 

And, nicely timed, here's a review of the Raven's Mountain edition from February's School  Library Journal: 

"After moving unwillingly across the country, Raven and her sister go mountain climbing with their stepdad. Raven is so excited to be the first one to reach the peak that she does a victory dance, causing an avalanche that sends her sliding and traps her sister and stepdad. Hurt, lost, and alone, she must find a way down the mountain. Orr keeps the tension up through first-person narration that allows readers to feel pressure right along with Raven. Because most of the plot involves Raven climbing independently, this is an introspective novel focusing on her ability to overcome this hardship. She is forced into leadership as she moves from self-pity to action. It is refreshing to see a nature adventure with a female protagonist in a genre often flooded with male characters.  "Carrie Shaurette, Dwight-Englewood School, Englewood, NJ

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9. Hidden

Spring is finally coming. Things that have been hidden under the snow are coming back. Look! It’s a coffee cup!

dd cup

Mom’s new story was hidden under the snow in her brain. Every single day, when she started working on it, she gave it a new title, made a list of new characters, decided on a new theme, and gave them new goals to accomplish, new problems to solve, and different obstacles to overcome.


It’s a good thing spring is coming. Mom’s hidden story is coming back. It’s her third day working with the same title, the same theme, the same characters, and they have the same goals, problems, and obstacles as they had yesterday.


I think spring has sprung….

Look! It’s a banana!


I wonder if the black bananas taste better than the yellow ones….

And a ginger ale bottle.


And my beehive is back from under the snow!!


Hello, old friend…

14 Comments on Hidden, last added: 3/19/2014
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10. Inspirational Quote of the Week

Creativity doesn’t wait for that perfect moment. It fashions its own perfect moments out of ordinary ones.

-Bruce Garrabrandt-

Moments matter – Every single one of them. I try to use each one wisely.




kissing vic






teddybear playing

And helping.

photo 2

This past weekend we lost 60 moments of sleep for daylight savings. Well, the humans did. I got those moments back in spades 60 times over.


Mom uses one hour of moments each day for work. And by work I mean she sits there and types on the computer and talks out loud to herself. Sometimes the Creativity visits her during that hour. I love visitors. I’m not sure I’ve ever met the Creativity Visitor, though. Maybe tomorrow…..


If the Creativity doesn’t visit at that exact work time, Mom still works. Each month, she makes a new story and fixes up an old story (or two or three) for her 12×12 Challenge. She also reads books about writing books, and reads books like the books she writes. Wait. What?


Writing time is not for blogs, not for Facebook, not for email, not for Words With Friends, and not even for TV.

photo 3

It’s just working on stories in one way or another – writing them, reading them, fixing them, thinking about them, submitting them to agents and publishers, and giving me cuddles and treats…. (See what I did there?) If the Creativity doesn’t come – Oh well. Maybe tomorrow…..

We’ll be ready.


10 Comments on Inspirational Quote of the Week, last added: 3/10/2014
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11. Call for Entries: 2014 PBBY-Alcala Prize

The Philippine Board on Books for Young People (PBBY) is now accepting entries for the 2014 PBBY-Alcala Prize.

The winner shall be given a cash prize of P25,000.00, a gold medal, and an opportunity to be published. Prizes will be awarded in an appropriate ceremony to be held during the celebration of National Children's Book Day on July 15, 2014.


1. The contest is open to all Filipino citizens except those who are related to any PBBY member up to the third degree of consanguinity.

2. Entries must be based on any of the following, all honorable mention winners of the 2014 PBBY-Salanga Prize:

        "Ang Misay sa Aming Bahay" by Susan Anne Alegro Quirante
        "Gaano ba Kalayo Patungong Paaralan?" by Genaro Gojo Cruz
        "Reyna Elena" by Michael de Guzman

3. Copies of these stories may be requested from the PBBY Secretariat or downloaded from the PBBY website.

4. All entries must be original unpublished illustrations that have not won in any previous contest.

5. All entries must consist of three (3) illustrations that are of the same size and medium. Entries do not have to be based on consecutive spreads/parts of the text.

6. A contestant may send in more than one (1) entry.

7. Each entry must be signed by a pen name only, preferably on a small piece of paper pasted on the back of each artwork. Entries with a signature or any identifying marks are automatically disqualified.

8. Together with each entry, contestants must submit a separate envelope, on the face of which only the pen name of the contestant shall appear. The envelope must contain the contestant's full name, address, contact numbers, short description of background, and notarized certification vouching for the originality of the entry and for the freedom of the organizers from any liability arising from the infringement of copyright in case of publication.

9. All entries must be sent to the PBBY Secretariat, c/o Adarna House, 109 Scout Fernandez cor. Scout Torillo Sts., Quezon City by April 14, 2014.

10. Winners will be announced no later than May 12, 2014. Non-winning entries must be claimed no later than June 13, 2014, after which they will no longer be the responsibility of the organizers.

For more details, interested parties may contact the PBBY Secretariat by calling 352.6765 or emailing pbby [at] adarna.com.ph.


April 14, 2014 (5:00 p.m.)

0 Comments on Call for Entries: 2014 PBBY-Alcala Prize as of 3/9/2014 10:02:00 PM
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Cropped Pic 2

Today I had the privilege of being a reader at a local elementary school.  I got to read one of my favorite books, The Bee Bully, and talk to the kids about being an author.  The energetic kindergartners made me feel very welcome and I really enjoyed spending some time with them.  We talked a little bit about what it means to be a bully and how important reading is.

Three reasons why reading is important to young children:

1).  Reading exercises our brains.  That’s right, our brains need a workout too.  Reading strengthens brain connections and can even create new ones so pick up a book and help your brain exercise.

2).  Reading improves concentration.  Kids have to focus when they read which can sometimes be a difficult task.  The more you read the longer you can extend that concentration time which will continue to improve.

3).  Reading helps develop imagination.  When you read your brain translates what is read to pictures.  Did you know you can create a movie in your head while you read?  We become engrossed in the story and we can connect with the characters.  We can sympathize with how a character feels and reflect on how we would feel in that same situation.

Now go grab a book and BEE A READER!


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13. Best Doctor Ever

photo 1

Today is Dr. Seuss’s birthday. He would’ve been 109 years old. He is the Best Doctor Ever on account of no needles, no looking into ears with a flashlight, no sticks stuck into forbidden places, and no touching of my bits and pieces.

Waiting for the doctor...

Waiting for the Doctor. Hoping for the Best.

Mom also loves Dr. Seuss for a million other reasons – his wild imagination, his silly rhyming, his crazy stories, and the fact that his first book was rejected 27 times before anybody said they liked it. Misery loves company.


Mom’s #1 favorite Dr. Seuss book is The 500 Hats of Bartholomew Cubbins from 1938.

500 hats

Normally, Mom and I steer clear of anything that smacks of numbers, but counting those hats is so much fun and so suspenseful that we can’t resist it. Also, a hundred years ago, Mom’s 5th grade teacher, Mrs. Nelson read that story to her class and Mom and her friends giggled and counted and were afraid for poor little Bartholomew not being able to take his hat off for the king.

500 hats2

As of Dr. Seuss’s birthday, Mom is up to date on her 12×12 Challenge. She has written 2 new stories in the past 2 months. Now it’s a new month and time to start a new story.


In which direction should she go?

Direction? Up, of course.

King of the Hill of Filth

King of the Hill of Filth

What will be original?

Original? It doesn’t get any more original than an old dog learning a new trick.


Who will step out of her list of character ideas?

Character? This one.


Or this one.


Or this one.


How will she make the story sparkle?

Sparkle? With a tiara, of course.

Am I sparkling, yet?

Am I sparkling, yet?

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14. Stuck and Waiting or Stuck but Moving

Sometimes stories get stuck. Mom likes the rule of three, so if there are only two good obstacles in her story, she can be Stuck-and-Waiting for one more good idea. Her other choice is to use an obstacle that isn’t her favorite and worry about it later. Then she is Stuck-but-Moving.


If a character turns boring halfway through the story, Mom can be Stuck-and-Waiting. A story that is Stuck-and-Waiting can die a miserable death. Her other choice is to go back to her character sketch and add some flaws, quirks, oddities, and traits to bump that character up. Even if he or she isn’t perfect, Mom can go back to work and worry about it later. Then she is Stuck-but-Moving.

jump for joy

When I come inside, I need to get the rock salt (and snow and mud) cleaned off my feet with a baby wipe. Sometimes, I am Stuck-and-Waiting.

photo 2

Wipe my feet, please….

When the snow is really deep (and touching my belly *shiver*) my legs can’t reach solid ground. Mom says, “I am not carrying you anymore.” So I get busy – Stuck-but-Moving.

Inside a snow bank, there could be something fun like a ball or something yummy like a piece of bread that the birds dropped. There’s one way to find out - drill my nose in as far as I can. Then I am Stuck-and-Searching. That’s my favorite way to be!

photo 1

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15. Five Word Friday

5 cards

Today’s five words are about being happy.

1. King of the Hill – I am happy when I am King of the Hill. Even though the hill is sometimes made of black plow-snow mixed with ice. And stones. And dirt.

photo 2

2. Great Story Idea – Mom is happy when she gets a great story idea in her head. At first a new idea is all white and fluffy and has unlimited possibilities.

snow 63

3. Beehive – I was happy when enough snow melted so I could see the broken piece of beehive that fell out of the tree a few months ago.


I TASTED it! Mom said the word, “Oh no you didn’t!” But oh yes, I did.


Is she watching me?

4. Brand New Story – Mom is happy when she sits down to start writing a brand new story about her brand new idea. Still white, still fluffy, and still filled with unlimited possibilities.


5. On top – I am happy walking on top of a foot of snow covered by a few inches of ice. As long as I stay on top, the snow can’t touch my belly. *shiver* But sometimes, I end up holding on for dear life  with my tiny chicken-feet so I don’t slide into the street.

photo 3

26. Holding On –  After Mom works on her story for a while, she feels like she’s holding on for dear life with chicken-feet trying to get to the end and making sure the story isn’t a computer full of nonsense. She is happy when she finishes, though, and sometimes it’s nonsense and sometimes it’s not. But either way, it’s finished.


71. Cutting out nonsense - After the end of the story, Mom has to revise. That does not make her happy, but it has to be done. It helps cut out some of the nonsense and makes the story better. Just do it, Mom. Don’t look back.

photo 1

I’m King of the …… *gulp*


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16. Prizes

The ALA Awards were presented last week. There were a LOT of winners. Mom wasn’t any of them. Not only did she not WRITE any of the winning books, she has barely READ any of the winning books. I think she needs to step up her game. She has printed out the list, so that’s a good start.

Meanwhile, I have been winning awards left and right over here.

Our friends Wallace and Samuel  and Coccolino gave us the Best Blog Around the World Award.


Around the WORLD – Hear that, Mom?

photo 2

Our friend at Trifles gave us the Cracking Chrispmouse Bloggywog Award

christmas awardand the Opposites Attract Award


See, Mom? I spread joy, peace, cheer, and stuff like that all over the place.


And our friends Little B. and Granny at Angelswhisper gave us the Excellence Award. excellence-awardExcellence, Mom. Not just-OK or good-enough or kinda-nice or a Rate-Your-Story-4.


Thanks to all of our bloggy friends for sharing these awards.

And Mom, it’s seriously time to step up your game.

Less this....

Less this….

...and more this!

…and more this!

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17. Inspirational Quote of the Week

Vision is not enough. It must be combined with venture. It is not enough to stare up the steps, we must step up the stairs.
Vaclav Havel


Mom’s Highlights Contest story is finished resting, and thanks to her Contest Magic classmates giving her tons of help, she revised it –  AGAIN – cutting and adding and switching and tightening and tweaking (not twerking – trust me – nobody wants to see that).

 Yesterday, we went to the mailbox


and Mom unceremoniously dropped it in. She said, “I could work on this thing for the rest of my life.” and “It’s time to stop staring up the steps and step up the stairs.” and “Where do you think you’re going?”


Mom is hoping to win big, but she is also hoping for her cyberclassmates to win big right along with her. She said, “Their stories are amazing.” and “Can I even compete with these people?” and “There’s nothing up there for you.”

Is she talking to me??

Is she talking to me??

10 Comments on Inspirational Quote of the Week, last added: 1/31/2014
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18. Links I Shared on Twitter this Week: January 24

TwitterLinksHere are highlights from the links that I shared on Twitter this week @JensBookPage.

Book Lists and Awards

Stacked: A Couple of #YAlit Mini-Trends: Downton Abbey Clones + The Wizard of Oz reimagined http://ow.ly/sVmsS

Mock Newbery, Caldecott + Printz Lists – The Ultimate Round-Up — @fuseeight http://ow.ly/sVmh4 #kidlit

25 YA Novels Everyone — Even Adults — Should Read – @Flavorwire http://ow.ly/sTBQn via @PWKidsBookshelf

RT @pragmaticmom: 10 Perfect Read Aloud Books for 3rd Grade http://bit.ly/1fXujC6 #3rdGrade #KBN @ColbySharp #KidLit

CCBlogC: The 2014 Charlotte Zolotow Award Goes to Lemony Snicket http://ow.ly/sQR6M #kidlit

The Fairytales and Folktales of 2013: An Accounting — @fuseeight http://ow.ly/sOfVU #kidlit

Great book ideas | Emily’s Library ( @PhilNel 's 3/yo niece) Part 7: 31 Good Books for Small Humans http://ow.ly/sM8Fa #kidlit

Congratulations to @LaurelSnyder + other winners of 2014 Sydney Taylor Book Awards http://ow.ly/sOdXR @JewishLibraries

10 (Really Good) Books That Didn't Make Our #Cybils Shortlist from @Book_Nut http://ow.ly/sM6Iz #kidlit #sff

Always a worthy goal | Titles That Have Legs by @katsok + @donalynbooks @NerdyBookClub http://ow.ly/sM7rv #kidlit

The 2014 Edgar Award Nominees (best mysteries by category, inc. #kidlit and #yalit ) http://ow.ly/sFnuW via @bkshelvesofdoom


Mitali Perkins’ Students Debate Whether or Not Faces Belong on Book Covers | @CBCBook http://ow.ly/sVenT @MitaliPerkins

2014 Releases: LGBTQ Young Adult Literature | @molly_wetta at wrapped up in books http://ow.ly/sLZS6 #yalit

A Tuesday Ten: African American Characters in Fantasy and SF | Views From the Tesseract http://ow.ly/sQSrT #kidlit

MCBookDay-21-300x234Multicultural Children’s Book Day is Coming Jan 27th! – by @PragmaticMom @NerdyBookClub http://ow.ly/sHil7 #kidlit

Growing Bookworms

Can you make kids love books? asks @salon http://ow.ly/sTBLx via @PWKidsBookshelf

RT @katsok: THIS is why reading aloud to children (yours & your students) is magical & important. http://sharpread.wordpress.com/2014/01/22/a-crooked-kind-of-perfect-reading-moment/ … Thanks for sharing, @colbysharp

Lovely! On reading picture books to my 10/yo son - a sentimental post about why it's been a nice thing @charlotteslib http://ow.ly/sM8i2

Fancy Nancy-like Books "For Boys" (and girls) from @abbylibrarian http://ow.ly/sHhVv #vocabulary and love of words

Seven Things You Should Be Doing as You’re Reading to Your Child - I Can Teach My Child! http://ow.ly/sHh4I via @tashrow #literacy


Introducing the First Ever, Absolutely Fantastic, SLJ Pre-Game and Post-Game Show!!! — @fuseeight http://ow.ly/sM5kF #kidlit

Regarding Independent Booksellers, @gail_gauthier asks: Why Can't I Shop In Both Places? http://ow.ly/sM2KK

First installment of a very cool new #YAlit Roundup @tordotcom http://ow.ly/sM8ws (via Tanita Davis)

On Reading, Writing, and Publishing

RT @RIFWEB: Well said @CharlesMBlow! THANK YOU for sharing your story about the power of books and reading. #bookpeopleunite http://goo.gl/MVJup7

KidlitCon2013Tip for authors from #KidLitCon | How Do You Know Which Blogs To Tell About Your Book? @leewind @scbwi @MotherReader http://ow.ly/sQjNr

Very nice! Top 10 Things Picture Books Taught Me by @BethShaum @NerdyBookClub http://ow.ly/sM5Hg #kidlit

Fascinating Numbers About Children's Book Sales + a decline in teens reading for fun @leewind @scbwi http://ow.ly/sFn4Z via @FuseEight


Why Is Narcissism Increasing Among Young Americans? asks Peter Gray in Psychology Today http://ow.ly/sFmPl

Picture book suggestions for Beating the Monsters from @ReadingWithBean http://ow.ly/sM5f1 #kidlit

Programs and Research

Sigh! RT @FirstBook: 61% of low-income families have no age appropriate books at home. http://bit.ly/1c8EGKU @cliforg

eReading Is Rising, But It’s Not Replacing Print: Pew Research @GalleyCat http://ow.ly/sHhqi #literacy via @tashrow

Schools and Libraries

What is the Best Starting Age for Schooling, some guidelines from @TrevorHCairney http://ow.ly/sQSOs #parenting

How The Common Core Became Education's Biggest Bogeyman @HuffingtonPost http://ow.ly/sM7PD via Wendie Old

Library Programming for Preschoolers: Take a Tip from Preschool Centers | @hiMissJulie http://ow.ly/sM3tD #libraries

It DOES Make a Difference. @lochwouters seconds @hiMissJulie on boosting your youth librarian colleagues http://ow.ly/sFmCY

Social Media and Devices

True! Why patting the bunny is better than swiping the screen @OnParenting via @PWKidsBookshelf http://ow.ly/sTBsP

Words of reason from @katsok about Social Media and Our Students (applies to our kids, too) http://ow.ly/sM5QL

Everything I Need to Know About Twitter I Learned in Kindergarten by @StaceyLoscalzo http://ow.ly/sQS6Q

The Book Chook: 2013 iPad App Reviews at @bookchook http://ow.ly/sM7AR #literacy #kidlit

© 2014 by Jennifer Robinson of Jen Robinson's Book Page. All rights reserved. You can also follow me @JensBookPage or at my Growing Bookworms page on Facebook.

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19. Happy New Year! The 2013 Cybils Finalists Are Here

Cybils2013SmallAs I promised yesterday, the 2013 Cybils shortlists have been announced, and they are fabulous. Cybils Editor-in-Chief Anne Levy says: 

"Happy Cybils New Year! Really, when all the confetti is swept up, the champagne bottles put in recycling, and your hangover nursed back to a semblance of sobriety, what else is there? Us, that's what!

We're back again with another list of books that kept our panelists riveted through the holiday season. We sifted through more than 1,300 books and apps this year. Phew! We have this down to a science by now, but even so, there have been a few changes." (Click through for more detail about the changes, and trends we've observed in this year's crop of finalists)

Some highlights for me: 

The Fiction Picture Books list includes 3 of my favorites: Mr. Tiger Goes Wild, Open this Little Book, and Sophie's Squash (links go to my reviews). Kinda glad I'm not on the Round 2 panel that has to select between those and several other well-regarded titles. But one day, I would like to be a Round 1 judge again in this category. So many wonderful books.

Penny and Her Marble on the Easy Readers shortlist (how have I not reviewed this one?). With, of course, an Elephant & Piggie title, and several others that I look forward to checking out with my daughter. I see this category becoming increasingly important for reading suggestions for my household in the next couple of years, along with the Early Chapter Books category. 

Escape from Mr. Lemoncello's Library and The 14 Fibs of Gregory K on the Middle Grade Fiction shortlist. I'm extra-happy for Gregory K author Greg Pincus, who is a real-world friend. 

The Young Adult Speculative Fiction list is chock full of books that I've been wanting to read, and one that I did read and enjoy: Dark Triumph from the His Fair Assassin series. 

But really, all of the lists are amazing. Need recommendations for nonfiction? YA graphic novels? Poetry? Book apps? The Cybils organization has your back. But don't take my word for it. Click through and see. You won't be disappointed. Happy New Year and Happy Cybils Day! 

© 2013 by Jennifer Robinson of Jen Robinson's Book Page. All rights reserved. You can also follow me @JensBookPage or at my Growing Bookworms page on Facebook. This site is an Amazon affiliate. 

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20. Countdown Wednesday

Today we are counting down about winning. Not the Charlie Sheen kind which was kind of weird, but the writer kind. And the blogging-dog-of-a-writer-kind.

photo 1

Mom is a Winner

3. Mom’s book won a prize once. It’s called The Moonbeam Award. It shows as a badge on the cover of her book. I think it would look better shaped like a dog bone.

book cover

2. In 2013, Mom’s story Show and Tell Surprise was in Humpty Dumpty Magazine. That was a winner. Plus, magazines taste delicious.


1. Mom also had an acceptance from MeeGenius for her first ever ebook, named What If I Don’t. We can’t even wait to see that one in the MeeGenius Bookstore. BIG winner. Plus, inside my head, I often think, “What-if-I-don’t?”. I hope someday to say it out loud.

meegenius blue

78. Mom is a winner in the 12×12 Challenge. She wrote 12 storybooks in 12 months. Just barely by the skin of her teeth, but she did it.


I am a Winner, too!

3. Hutch a Good Life awarded me the Sunshine Award. Yay! I love sunshine. Plus I am afraid of the dark. 


2. Along with Nikitaland, Hutch also gave me the Blog of the Year Award. I have seen friends that have this award, and I am in good company with it. Plus stars are my favorite shape – except for dog bones.


1. Bacon and AngelsWhisper both awarded me the Friends and Followers Award. I love friends and followers. So, thanks, friends! And thanks, followers!


67. I will give myself the Biggest Rule Breaker Award.

photo 3

Something smells good in here…..

I always ignore rules, so if you are reading my blog, you deserve an award. Feel free to share my bling, and also take a minute to click my friends’ links and check them out. Then maybe you can be a Rule Breaker, too.

photo 2

Mom left a cup of coffee for me. Yay!


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21. Links I Shared on Twitter this Week: January 3

TwitterLinksHere are highlights from the links that I shared on Twitter over the past two weeks @JensBookPage. The top two stories for me this week were the announcement of the 2013 Cybils finalists, and the announcement of the new National Ambassador of Children's Literature, Kate DiCamillo. 

Book Lists

I can't share everyone's year-end list, but Tasha's is strong | Top 25 Picture Books of 2013 from @tashrow Waking Brain Cells http://ow.ly/sdVjB

Good stuff! Young Adult Sci-Fi That Will Get Readers Psyched About Science | Lydia Kang http://ow.ly/sdskg @HuffPostBooks via @tashrow

Let’s Get Metafictional (books that show the audience that they are aware of themselves as a created work) http://ow.ly/sc3wb from SSHEL

Top 10 Picture Book Lists for Kids from @momandkiddo at What Do We Do All Day? http://ow.ly/sa5FE #kidlit

Top Kids' Book Lists of 2013 {Chapter Books} - What Do We Do All Day? from @momandkiddo http://ow.ly/s69Xt #kidlit

Books for Kids: Favorite Easy Readers from 2013 - @growingbbb http://ow.ly/s6a2u #kidlit

A Tuesday Ten: Invention in Picture Books | Views From the Tesseract http://ow.ly/s68KN #kidlit

20 Of The Best Children’s Books Of 2013 @buzzfeed by @colbysharp + @donalynbooks http://ow.ly/s1EJo #kidlit #yalit


Cybils2013SmallOn the #cybils blog: Author and Publisher Reactions to Being @Cybils Finalists #kidlit http://bit.ly/1kh6ZB9

On the #cybils blog: The Ones that Got Away: Favorites that Didn't Make the Shortlists #kidlit http://bit.ly/190Bzdl

RT @ixtumea: My Top Cybils' 2013 YA Nonfiction picks: http://kimbacceliasweblogfantasy.blogspot.com/2014/01/my-top-5-ya-nonfiction-picks.html …

Stephanie @scharle4 has rounded up all 77 #CYBILS Finalists!! Her goal is to read them all. Join her! http://ow.ly/se2T5 #kidlit

GottaBook: The Cybils' Short Lists Announced (and I'm on one!) from @gregpincus http://ow.ly/sdVae #kidlit

ScholasticcdaRT @ScholasticCDA: We're thrilled to see some Scholastic books among the finalists for the 2013 @cybils awards! http://bit.ly/19MQ7vw pic.twitter.com/aDdjX7cbO5

Some fun #Cybils Statistics in advance of the short list announcements (tonight at midnight mountain time) http://ow.ly/sblQU #kidlit

Countdown! to the #Cybils shortlists (coming New Year's Day) from @aquafortis Finding Wonderland http://ow.ly/sa3oX @Cybils


Great resource: Rounding Up The Diverse Middle Grade Speculative Fiction Books of 2013 @charlotteslib http://ow.ly/se3fB #kidlit

Just in from @FuseEight - #kidlit for 2014 featuring Kids of Color: Things Are Looking Up http://ow.ly/s1BCb

Seeking Wonderful Young Adult Novels That Deal With Race @NPRBooks | They already have LATTE REBELLION by @aquafortis http://ow.ly/rY3l7

Growing Bookworms

Fun stuff! 12 Days of Christmas - A #Literacy Feast @readingtub Family Bookshelf http://ow.ly/s68QQ

Hooked on books: Author James Patterson wants kids to share his love of reading : Herald Student News http://ow.ly/rY5yH via @tashrow

Why Reading Sucks: Talking honestly with kids might make them more passionate readers @PernilleRipp @sljournal http://ow.ly/rY3Kr

Kidlit News (inc. National Ambassador Announcement)

NatAmbInterview with Kate DiCamillo, New National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature by @100scopenotes @sljournal http://ow.ly/sdSXf

Kate DiCamillo Named New National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature, 2014-2015 @CBCBook http://ow.ly/sdsDh "Stories connect us"

Don't miss the December Carnival for Children's Literature 2013 @MoloneyKing http://ow.ly/sa3wn #kidlit

See all of the 2013 Nerdies from @NerdyBookClub via this link: http://ow.ly/sfDoC | some #cybils overlap, different goals, all #kidlit

Rest in Peace, Ned Vizzini. The #yalit world is sorry to see you go. Nice piece @Vulture http://ow.ly/rY4Fd via @bkshelvesofdoom

On Reading, Writing, and Publishing

RT @tashrow It Seems Weird How Cheap Amazon Kindles Are — Until You See This Crazy Stat – Business Insider http://buff.ly/1fmuJh6 #ebooks

Food for thought: Nancy Drew + the Case of the Politically Incorrect Children’s Books @TabletMag via @bkshelvesofdoom http://ow.ly/rVtGo


This, I like: Secret Parenting Tip: Get Your Kids To Leave You Alone for 10 Minutes from @momandkiddo http://ow.ly/sdUqV

Programs and Research

eScienceCommons: A novel look at how reading novels changes the brain (+ has a lasting effect) http://ow.ly/sa5di via @bkshelvesofdoom

Schools and Libraries

Why Is the Only Way Up to Go Out (of the classroom)? asks @thereadingzone http://ow.ly/sc3Fn

© 2013 by Jennifer Robinson of Jen Robinson's Book Page. All rights reserved. You can also follow me @JensBookPage or at my Growing Bookworms page on Facebook.

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22. Frenzy

Sometimes, when I play with my monkey in a barrel, it puts me into a frenzy. There’s just too much going on! Too much to do. Too many possibilities. Bite the barrel? Tear off the lid? Growl at the talking? Rip the monkey’s face off? Chew his arm till he stops laughing? Shake the whole thing till I’m dizzy? I don’t know what to do first.

Since NewYears, Mom has also been in a frenzy. She’s not biting, tearing, growling, ripping, chewing, or shaking, like me. But she does have a lot going on, a lot to do, and a lot of possibilities. She may have bitten off more than she can chew. I’ve done that occasionally, too…. (And by “occasionally” I mean every day.)


Gah! Why is my mouth so tiny?!

Mom has entered a ton of challenges, and made a bunch of goals for herself this year. She will read 200 picture books in the Goodreads Challenge again,

2014 goodreads

she joined 12×12 for 2014, which means she needs to write a new first draft in the next few weeks,


she’ll get 30 new ideas when PiBoIdMo starts,


and she will write 30 poems this year.


In between all those jobs (and a bunch of others – if you can believe such a thing), Mom decided to enter the Highlights Annual Fiction Contest this month, AND take Susanna Hill’s Making Contest Magic class this week.

So Mom is learning, mind-writing, registering, paypal-ing, reading, commenting, revising, studying, listing, rhyming, critiquing, and ….do you see what’s missing here??

Snow pea?? Blech! I may have bitten off (stolen) more than I can chew again.

Snow pea?? Blech! I may have bitten off more than I can chew again.

Rocky, over at my friend Bacon’s blog told me that January 6 was National CuddleUp Day. So I made sure Mom took some time out to celebrate. Actually, I will make sure we celebrate that thing EVERY day!!


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23. Links I Shared on Twitter this Week: January 10

TwitterLinksHere are highlights from the links that I shared on Twitter this week @JensBookPage. It was a bit of a light week overall, but, happily, there are a number of excellent articles dedicated to growing bookworms. 

Book Lists and Awards

Some good books in the Newbery / Caldecott 2014: Final Prediction Edition from @FuseEight http://ow.ly/sqTfx #kidlit

These are standouts | Picture Book Gems of Years Past 10 years recommended by @fuseeight http://ow.ly/somuE #kidlit

Neat to see so much #kidlit in the top 20 books of last year (w/ a middle grade title at the top) http://ow.ly/smEkF via @100scopenotes

Another good list: 2013 Best Children’s Fiction from @tashrow Waking Brain Cells http://ow.ly/smDZO #kidlit


At Random Musings of a Bibliophile @brandymuses reviews the fabulous The Latte Rebellion by my friend @aquafortis http://ow.ly/sqSRS

The folks @bookriot are looking to cover more books by people of color, and are looking for your author suggestions http://ow.ly/somRL


2013-badge-chocolateandpink (1)It's that time of year | Launching A #KidLit Celebration of Women's History Month, 2014! http://ow.ly/skog9

The 2014 SLJ’s Battle of the Kids’ Books is ramping up! http://ow.ly/solzx via @bkshelvesofdoom #kidlit

Growing Bookworms

Nice! Through the Years: Reflections on Raising a Reader by Monica Babaian @txlibrarianbabs @NerdyBookClub http://ow.ly/smFrw

The Importance of Reading Bedtime Stories to Big Kids | @Scholastic http://ow.ly/soRa4 #literacy

Because kids need books! Ten Ways to Find Children's Books on the Cheap from @BooksBabiesBows #kidlit #literacy http://ow.ly/smF2B

Excellent! Matt Renwick’s Top 10 Takeaways from The Read Aloud Handbook by Jim Trelease @NerdyBookClub @ReadByExample http://ow.ly/smEMf

On her daughter finding "Her Book", "THE book that spoke to her" by @GigiMcAreads @NerdyBookClub http://ow.ly/sfHA8

Excellent resource! Chapter Books to Read With Children 5-12 from @TrevorHCairney http://ow.ly/sfHpz #literacy


Twenty Questions from @escapeadulthood to Start Your Year with a Bang. I like "What's my perfect day?" http://ow.ly/sonlc

On Reading, Writing, and Publishing

Stacked: The Reductive Approach to YA Revisited: Contemporary YA & Generosity to Readers http://ow.ly/smDMe @catagator #yalit

Food for thought from @haleshannon at Squeetus: The young adult book tropes that ate the world http://ow.ly/sko3K

Schools and Libraries

A great idea! Nonfiction in the School Cafeteria | @ReadByExample http://ow.ly/smFb0 #literacy

© 2013 by Jennifer Robinson of Jen Robinson's Book Page. All rights reserved. You can also follow me @JensBookPage or at my Growing Bookworms page on Facebook.

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24. International Book Giving Day: February 14th

Ibgd-blog-badge200pxFebruary 14th is already known through children's and YA book blogging land as the day that the Cybils winners are announced. (There's some other holiday that day, too, I think, but we're book people here. Right?) February 14th is also International Book Giving Day. The official site (see details here - this is a grass roots effort) recommends three ways to celebrate:

  1. Give a Book to a Friend or Relative.
  2. Leave a Book in a Waiting Room or Lobby.
  3. Donate a Book.

There's a cool poster, designed by Hungarian designer and illustrator Mariann Marayjust released for 2014: 


I found this poster at the home of Amy at Delightful Children's Books. She is one of the organizers of this event. Other International Book Giving Day posts are up at Susan Stephenson's blog, and at Playing by the Book (also organizers). 

I haven't decided how we'll celebrate at my house. (I give books to my daughter so often that giving her a book will hardly stand out). But I'll be giving it some thought. Meanwhile, you can follow along using the hashtag #giveabook on Twitter.

Happy Book-Giving! 

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25. Countdown Wednesday


Today, Mom and I are counting down about rest.

What I Know About Rest

3. I nap in my bed.

photo 1

2. I nap on the couch.

photo 2

…a lot.

photo 4

16. I nap in the street. (But only in the summer.)

street nap2

1. I nap on Mom’s bed. I am allowed on her bed when she says the word, “OK” and then we sleep there all night long.

photo 10

Who turned out the lights?

I am not allowed on there when she makes the bed, or when she is sorting out her folders and paperwork for her college job.

photo 3

Who? Me?

What Mom Knows About Rest

3. Waking up super-early in the morning, lazing in bed, drinking tea is a perfect, restful start to the day.

photo 11

2. After a story is finished it needs to rest. No working on it, no looking at it, no THINKING about it.

photo 20

Sometimes, a story needs to rest for a week. Sometimes longer.


1. While a story is asleep, it’s difficult to wait for it to finish resting. It’s good to start mind-writing a new story right away. (And all new stories should be about me!)


26. When stories wake up from resting, they sometimes stink.

photo 30

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